Hong Kong plans to return to BaselWorld

The huge Hong Kong delegation wants to return to BaselWorld, the international Swiss watch and jewelry fair, says its sponsor, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council.

“Our aim is to return to Basel, and right now we are working together with the Fair authorities to make this return possible,” said Lore Buscher, director of the HKTDC regional office in Frankfurt, Germany, which organizes its participation in the annual global show.

Exhibitors in the 380-member Hong Kong group this Spring threatened never to return to the annual Basel Show if it continued to hold its foreign delegations’ exhibition in Zurich. The Swiss government in April unexpectedly banned Asian exhibitors from show’s Zurich exhibition, at Zurich’s urging, just before it opened, to prevent the possible spread of the SARS illness.

On July 9, MCH Swiss Exhibition, which owns and manages BaselWorld, announced it will return the show’s foreign pavilions to Basel, starting in 2004, and build a new exhibition hall for them.

“We very much appreciate the decision of MCH Swiss Exhibition Ltd. to host the entire show in Basel again,” said Buscher. “After the de-facto exclusion of Hong Kong exhibitors during this year’s BaselWorld, Zurich was no alternative for us anymore.”